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Disable lock screen widgets, camera access on Android 4.2

Not a fan of the new lock screen widgets in Android 4.2? You can easily disable them with a free app. Here's what you need to know.

Jason Cipriani
Jason Cipriani
Jason Cipriani Contributing Writer, ZDNet
Jason Cipriani is based out of beautiful Colorado and has been covering mobile technology news and reviewing the latest gadgets for the last six years. His work can also be found on sister site CNET in the How To section, as well as across several more online publications.
Jason Cipriani
Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

At first glance, the lock screen widgets in Android 4.2 may seem like a convenient feature. But you may soon realize having all of your personal information plastered on what was once a secure screen, isn't ideal. Removing the widgets is simple, but you're still left with the box outlines every time you wake your device, which can get annoying. And there's no way to disable widgets, or camera access for that matter, on the lock screen built into Android 4.2.

Thankfully, an Android developer has released a free app titled Lockscreen Policy, enabling you to disable the lock screen widgets and/or camera access on Android 4.2, as originally pointed out by Addictive Tips.

You're only a few steps away from ridding yourself of lock screen widgets:

  • Download and install the app from the Google Play Store.
  • Launch the app, and tap on the Activate button. You'll have to grant it device administrator privileges in order for it to do its job.
  • Toggle the switch next to widgets, camera or both to turn off the lock screen feature.
  • Enjoy a clutter-free lock screen.

If you change your mind down the road and want to delete the app, you'll need to deactivate it first. You can do so by launching it, tapping on the menu button and selecting deactivate (essentially you're stripping it of its device administration permission). Alternatively, you can edit device administrator privileges by going to Settings > Security > Device administrators and unchecking the respective box.